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Actor Lee Sun-kyun of Oscar-winning film 'Parasite' dies

Lee Sun-kyun
Kim Hee-won
Ju Ji-hoon
Posted at 8:56 PM, Dec 26, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-26 22:56:49-05

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Actor Lee Sun-kyun of the Oscar-winning movie "Parasite" has died, South Korea's emergency office said Wednesday.

Lee was found dead at a car in a central Seoul park on Wednesday, it said.

Police earlier said an unconscious Lee was discovered at an unidentified Seoul location.

South Korean media outlets including Yonhap news agency reported that police had been searching for Lee after his family reported he left home after writing a message similar to a suicide note earlier Wednesday.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP's earlier story is below:

Actor Lee Sun-kyun of the Oscar-winning movie "Parasite" has been found unconscious, South Korean police said Wednesday.

Police officers discovered an unconscious Lee at an unidentified Seoul location on Wednesday but gave no further details, police said.

South Korean media including Yonhap news agency reported that Lee was found dead in a car at a Seoul park. Yonhap cited police as saying they had been searching for Lee after his family reported he left home after writing a message similar to a suicide note earlier Wednesday.

Yonhap said a man was later found unconscious at the Seoul park and that police identified him as Lee. Yonhap said Lee was later confirmed dead. It said a charcoal briquette was discovered in the passenger seat of the car.

Lee was best known for his role in "Parasite," in which he played the head of a wealthy family. In 2021, he won a Screen Actors Guild award for "cast in a motion picture" for his role in the same film.

He was nominated for the best actor at the International Emmy Awards for his performance in the sci-fi thriller "Dr. Brain" last year.

Lee was a familiar figure on Korean screens for decades before his "Parasite" fame abroad. He became well-known for his role in a popular drama series, "Coffee Prince (2007)," and gained mainstream popularity with the medical drama "Behind The White Tower," followed by "Pasta (2010)" and My Mister (2018)."